- The Loom
Should the new flu stay secret? Or does secrecy kill?
Recently I blogged about a new strain of potentially dangerous flu that evolved during experiments in the Netherlands and Wisconsin. There I tried to counter the misconception that scientists had intentionally concocted this particular strain. Because these new flus actually evolved pretty quickly in laboratories, we now know we should take seriously the possibility that this transformation may happen in the outside world someday.
But there’s a second issue at play with this new virus: should the world get to see its genome?
As Martin Enserink reported last month, both teams of scientists have submitted their papers for publication. Normally, such a paper might include the entire genome of the new viruses. This was a touchy subject, so the papers